Instructions to Reviewers

(Revised January 2022)

Click Here to Log on to the Editorial Manager system


The American Journal of Pathology greatly appreciates your participation in the electronic peer review process and wants to make it an easy and enjoyable experience. Please contact the Editorial Office with any questions or concerns at or 240-283-9720.

The log-on site is the same for both authors and reviewers: Your username is the email address at which you received the invitation. If you cannot remember your password, please use the password retrieval link on the log-in site to have it emailed to you. If your email address has changed, or you simply wish to change it to an alternate, you will need to log in with the old one, then navigate to the “Update your details” page to make this update. Once updated, the new email address will replace the old one as your username.

Once logged in, click on the manuscript title to access the reviewer overview page. The manuscript PDF can be downloaded from the icon in the top left. Individual source files are also available to download in a Zip file. It is recommended that you prepare your comments to the editors and authors as word processing documents and then copy and paste them into the system. There is also the option to upload either a marked text or PDF file, or a separate document that contains your critique. When you are ready to complete your review, click on “Review” tab in the system to access the Comments for the Editors (confidential) and Comments to the Authors text boxes. Reviewers will also be asked for their overall recommendation (Reject, Major Revision, Minor Revision, or Accept) along with the priority they give the manuscript as a whole (low, medium, high, very high). Reviewers can also assign a numerical value of importance to a paper on a scale from 1 (lowest) to 100 (highest).

If you receive a review request that you cannot accept, please decline the request using the link included in the invitation email, or by sending a short decline notice via reply email. It is of great assistance to the Journal staff to know when requests cannot be accepted rather than having them pending with no reply. Declining reviewers are also encouraged to suggest alternate reviewer candidates, especially colleagues or junior members from their labs or working groups.

Reviewer Conduct

Detailed information regarding reviewer conduct can be viewed at The Journal believes strongly in the importance and integrity of the scientific peer-review process. Reviewers are required disclose any current or former affiliations (eg, employment, consultancies, stock ownership, honoraria, expert testimony) with any organization or entity having a direct financial or personal interest in the subject matter or materials discussed in the manuscript that could bias your opinions of the manuscript. You should also consider potential conflicts of interest arising from personal relationships or academic competition, and you should disqualify yourself from reviewing the manuscript if you believe it to be necessary. By agreeing to review this manuscript, you implicitly affirm that any potential conflicts of interest have been disclosed to the Editors and that you are able to provide an impartial review of this manuscript.

The manuscript is considered a PRIVILEGED COMMUNICATION. When reviewing a manuscript for the Journal, you take responsibility for maintaining its confidentiality. You should not retain copies of submitted manuscripts after completing their review. You may not make any use of the work described in the manuscript or take advantage of the knowledge gained by reviewing it until and unless it is published. It is the practice of The American Journal of Pathology to conduct a blinded peer-review process; it is considered a violation of this process for peer reviewers to identify themselves or attempt to communicate directly with authors regarding the reviewed manuscript without the express permission of the Editors. The Editors will consider any deliberate ethical violation during peer review of a manuscript to be actionable misconduct, the potential results of which may be reporting of conduct to your governing institution, dismissal as a peer reviewer for the Journal, and/or the denial to consider any future submissions to the Journal. Willful misconduct does not include incidents of honest misjudgment or inadvertent error.

If necessary, the manuscript may be discussed with a colleague in an effort to reach a decision. In such instances, you must inform your colleague of the manuscript’s confidentiality and ask that they disclose any potential conflicts of interest. Information regarding additional assistance (colleague’s name and disclosure information as well as a description of the level of assistance) should be included in the “Confidential Comments to the Editor” portion of the online reviewer form.

Finally, as the authors of the manuscript are eagerly awaiting a decision regarding publication, we respectfully ask that you complete your review in a timely manner, ie two weeks. Any delays in completing a review should be brought to the immediate attention of the Editorial Office so that we may assess the situation and adjust as needed.

Manuscript Review Instructions

Please make an overall appraisal of the manuscript’s suitability for publication in The American Journal of Pathology based on the following guidelines:

  1. The manuscript should provide significant new information or concepts.
  2. The data should be clearly presented with (a) an introduction stating the objectives and background, (b) precisely described experimental procedures, (c) clearly described results with tables and figures presented with maximum clarity, (d) a discussion that provides accurate interpretation of the data and their relation to other published work or the work of others, and (e) a relevant and concise bibliography.
  3. The title should be succinct (accurately reflecting the major findings of the work), and the abstract should stand alone (clearly summarizing the background, methodology, results, and significance of the study).
  4. The paper should conform to the Journal scope and manuscript preparation guidelines outlined in the Instructions to Authors, available online at Writing style and English usage may be briefly commented upon.
  5. The Journal has developed a Scientific Integrity Policy for defining scientific misconduct (eg, fabrication or falsification of data, plagiarism, or redundant publication), which can be viewed at Suspected misconduct should be reported in writing to the Editorial Office at The American Journal of Pathology, 1801 Rockville Pike, Rockville, MD 20852-9975

We value your opinion and the time and care taken to prepare this review for The American Journal of Pathology. We hope you may consider AJP for submission of your own work in the future.